Four veteran attorneys are competing for an open seat on the Berks County Court of Common Pleas. All of the candidates have cross-filed in both the Republican and Democratic primaries scheduled for May 16.
Common Pleas Court judges are elected for a 10-year term at an annual salary of $173,271, and can seek retention from voters to additional 10-year terms, but must retire at age 75.
Here’s a brief look at the candidates and their qualifications.
Tina Boyd, 45, of Oley Township, has been an attorney for 20 years after serving as a clerk for the late Judge Elizabeth Ehrlich. While most of her experience comes from family law in the private sector, she did serve as an attorney for the Berks County Domestic Relations Section for seven years.
Boyd said she will be impartial and fair in all cases that she presides over, as well as decisive and ethical.
“I want to bring back trust and confidence to the justice system,” she said. “I want litigants and parties to know that I care about the outcome of their cases and that I will listen to them, learn the facts, and apply the law.”
Boyd lives in Oley with her husband Jeff, and two children.
Michael J. Cammarano Sr.
Michael J. Cammarano Sr., 68, of Spring Township, has practiced law in Berks County for 38 years, and is looking to gain the open seat on the Court of Common Pleas. A native of the Reading area, Cammarano graduated from Central Catholic and earned his Doctorate at Temple University.
Currently, he practices at Cammarano & Cammarano, P.C. with his son Michael Cammarano Jr. He was also partners with the late defense attorney Emmanuel Dimitriou, and served as solicitor to two Berks County sheriffs — John Kramer and Barry Jozwiak.
In addition, Cammarano serves as an adjunct instructor at Berks Technical Institute. He lives in Sinking Spring with his wife Debra. They have two children and three grandchildren.
Ben Nevius, 37, of Oley Township, is a partner at Fox Rothschild LLP and has practiced law for 13 years — specializing in commercial litigation and municipal representation. While Nevius has had a wide range of experience in the private sector, he also currently serves as the Discovery Master for the Court of Common Pleas.
Nevius mentioned that he has much respect for the position, and said that he can best serve the public, and make an impact on the community, as a judge.
“If elected, I promise to work hard, move cases, and hold myself to the highest ethical standards, and do whatever I can to engender trust in the process and in my decisions.” he said.
Kelly Kline, 43, of Exeter Township, has a diverse background in the local justice system. She has served 11 years as a prosecutor, nine years as a Berks County District Attorney, and two years as a Deputy Attorney General. She is also practiced in the dependency court, orphan’s court, and family court.
Kline said that she plans to use her experience and leadership if elected in order to bring an atmosphere of fairness and respect in the court.
“Berks County deserves someone on the bench who has the diverse experience, leadership, and dedication to our community to provide a sense of fairness and justice to those who are involved with the legal system,” she said.